PATAGONIA, Chile -- It seems as though the host of TravelMart Latin America is able to grab the travel industry’s attention for years after the event. Lima, Peru is hoping it will be no different when it hosts Travel Mart Latin America 2010. At TravelMart Latin America 2009, Travel Agent spoke to several members of PromPeru, Peru’s tourism board, and the country’s hotel association, who told us the country plans for the event include fam trips to Machu Picchu and other areas with hopes of spreading the word to Americans that Peru is desirable destination for the North American market.
“I don’t understand why you have all these Americans who travel to far away, remote areas like Vietnam, Thailand and other places in Asia, but you rarely hear of many American who travel to South America,” says Jose Koechlin Von Stein, who runs the Panama Assoication of Hotels. “We are hoping next year’s event will change that.”
Von Stein told us that among the many host hotels for next year’s event will be Marriott, Sheraton, Westin, Orient Express, Melia and Hilton. While Von Stein and the rest of Peru wishes more Americans knew about the destination, the fact that many travelers aren’t fully acquainted with Peru is the main reason why it was chosen as next year’s host, says William H. Coleman, founder of TravelMart Latin America. “We specifically target emerging destinations, places that have great potential but aren’t still as known as they should be,” Coleman says.